Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tree Skirt for your Mini Christmas Tree

I am not one to get the Christmas decorations out before Thanksgiving, but I do make an exception for Christmas crafts. Christmas time can get a little busy so getting a head start on your projects is always a good idea.

A lot of people have these little fake trees now, but if you don't, they are fairly inexpensive, and fun to decorate. I got mine at Smith's Marketplace (Utah's version of Fred Meyer) for about $5.00 a couple years ago. Mine came with a really ugly base, pretty much it was the plaster/cement mold they stuck the tree in the get it to stand up. What was a crafty girl to do? That's right, make a mini tree skirt.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, my sewing skills are mediocre, so ANYONE can make this, it is so simple. I know a lot of people that have sewing machines but never use them, claiming they don't know how to sew. Forget about it, you can make this.

Here's what you'll need:

3/4 - 1 yard Fabric of your choice
3/4 - 1 yard Quilted Batting
Matching thread
Matching ric rac
Glue Gun

First you will need to decide how big you want your skirt to be. This will depend on your tree size and personal preference. You want the skirt to be proportional to your tree, so laying your fabric out around your tree you can get a general idea for how big you'd like it to be. My tree is only 2 feet tall, and as it turns out, giving the skirt a 2 foot diameter worked out best.

Once you decide on size you will need to make yourself a pattern. In this case, your pattern will consist of a piece of string and a marker of some sort. Take your string, tie it to a marker, and measure out half of whatever you decide the diameter is for your tree (my diameter was 24", so I measured out 12"). Lay out your fabric and quilted batting (wrong sides together). Mark the middle of your fabric. Place the string in the middle of your fabric, holding it down with your finger, and mark a circle on your fabric. This should create a nice big, even circle. Go ahead and pin your fabric and batting and cut the circle out.

Once you have your circle cut and properly pinned, sew the pieces together along the outside edge, being careful to stay as close to the edge as possible.

This is what I meant by "quilted batting." I'm not sure if that is the actual name of the product, but it's pretty much a thin layer of batting, with a finished side.

Once sewn together, go back to the mark you made in the center of your circle. You will need to create an opening for the base of the tree to come through. This too will depend on the size of the base your tree has. I just eyeballed mine. First I drew a circle with a 2" diameter and cut it out. Then I cut a 4" slit from the circle. At this point, it would be a good idea to test to make sure the opening is big enough for your base.

If so, pin together and sew again, like before, staying as close to the edges as possible. It won't look really pretty, but it will do the job and will not be seen once you have the skirt in place under the tree.

To finish the rough edges around the skirt, I glued ric rac the edge. If you're not comfortable using a glue gun, or don't have one, Tacky Glue would work as well, just make sure you let it dry completely before you use the skirt.

On a side note, I mentioned above that my base was some kind of cement mixture. It was a rough, scratchy surface. Not only was the dining room table in danger of getting scratched, but my skirt was snagging on the rough surface when I'd put it off and on. So I took a circle of felt, set my base on it, and brought the felt up and around the base and used my trusty glue gun to glue it in place. Love my glue gun.

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